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Esc. is the key at the top left of the keyboard that you frantically hit when your computer crashes or is infected by a virus.

Social networking via the cell phones/computers seems to have taken over all sense of reality. It seems like frantic-like people of all ages are attached to their computer screens up to twenty-four hours a day seven days a week.

We are nearly all addicts. The web site "eMarketer" estimates that: " the average smart phone user clicks. taps and swipes that insidious little electronic instrument an amazing 2,167 times a day". We engage, we re-tweet, we reply, we forward and at the end of the day we are too tired to delete.

Face Book has replaced a sense of reality for too many people who do not want to admit that they are addicted to their phones, Last week a 25 year old unemployed young man proudly told me that he
had a great social life- "300 very close friends" on Face book.

We have very young children attached to their tablets hanging on for dear life that someone will take away their only pleasure to stare at the screen. Watch custodial parents walking or driving with their children and tactile/ facial or verbal contact is sure not part of the parenting social


Next time your children or grandchildren are over for a visit try and carry on a meaningful conversation with them when they are watching a video game. They are so fixated on the computer screen that you are but a faint distant shadow. Do not dare and interrupt the constant flow of meaningless information
or you will be ignored/shunned into silence.

I have spent countless hours in the same room with my children who have kept their cellphones in their hands constantly checking, texting while I patiently waited to be appreciated or even acknowledged.

There is now even Sexting: the sharing of intimate photographs and tips for guys and dolls. Talk about show and tell; ask your college age son or daughter to explain the ins and outs of the app.

Recently Ella and I went for a walk on Hamilton Road to the "Fishing Hole." We walked East facing the traffic on the shoulder of the road to keep safe. To our horror a car careened down the hill from the Shell Station onto the shoulder of the road. We jumped into the ditch. The driver of the car barely kept her car on the road; she got out of the car with her cell phone in hand and asked : " if we were alright"?

I know that the police look with disfavor at those who use their mobile devices and ignore the rules of
the road and text and drive. Last Saturday morning while driving into London from Dorchester I had the misfortune to be tailed by a London Police Officer. I kept my speed under the posted limit of 50k and stopped for a red light. I looked in my rear mirror and to my amazement the man in blue was texting . I kept looking in the rear view mirror until the light turned green and then amber. I slowly drove through
the intersection and you guessed it the flashing lights on the cruiser indicated that I should pull over.
The officer gave me a warning advising me to pay better attention to the signal lights. I apologized for
my error.

I know what you are thinking; you have to be joking. "No. I did not scold the police officer that he was texting and driving."

As a counsellor I have to admit that the irresponsible constant use of cell phones in society scares the hell out of me. We are raising a generation of very lonely millennials that will not/can not communicate without being attached to their umbilical like mobile devices. What have we done wrong?

Len Lesser is an education/career counsellor in Dorchester.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com